The back of a metal watch
The back of a metal watch

Every watch collector knows you can’t just walk into a luxury boutique and expect to buy an in-demand timepiece, any more than you can walk into a gallery and pick up the latest Richard Prince. The space between demand and supply can be acute, and some watches acquire a status beyond value or taste. Here are six of the best compiled by James Gurney


A metal watch with a red face

An icon returns: Demand for Zenith’s heritage re-issues such as this Defy Revival is intense. It’s easy to see why. The faceted octagonal case and 14-sided bezel combined with the steel ladder bracelet, gives the £6,100 Defy a character as unique today as it was radical at its 1969 launch.

A black watch with a tech style silver face

Go faster: If ever a watchmaker could adopt the ad slogan “reassuringly expensive”, it is motor-racing favourite Richard Mille. The 1.75mm RM UP-01 Ferrari, created with Ferrari, is the thinnest watch ever designed. All 150 watches to be made are reportedly reserved, at £1.88m.

a blue watch with a blue face and strap

Blue blood: François-Paul Journe set up as a watchmaker nearly 25 years ago, after restoring antique clocks. That tradition, combined with a modern aesthetic, has collectors content to wait for years, even for the simplest creations such as the Chronomètre Bleu, which retails for just under $40K, but resells for upwards of $50K.

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A blue strap watch with a silver face with a hint of blue

What is the world: Greubel Forsey raises watchmaking to an art form by preserving and reviving craft skills. That the brand is looking to bring prices down to below £200,000 (the covetable GMT Balancier Convexe is around $400,000) and reduce waiting times to under two years tells you all about demand.

A silver metal watch with three black dots in the face

Classic cool: The value of the most sought-after vintage Rolex watches can reach absurd extremes. With others, such as the 1971 pandadial Daytona, the perfection of the design was enough to justify an estimate of up to €500,000 euros at Sotheby’s March 2023 Fine Watches sale.

A silver watch with a blue square face

Dreaming on: Demand for key Patek Philippe designs exceeds supply, reaches fever pitch for Nautilus variations and is beyond reason ($6.5m in 2021) for the Tiffany blue-dialled 5711/1A-018. For a white gold 5811/1G (£58,391), you might have a chance in a few generations.

This article was first published in the Spring/Summer 2023 issue of LUX

Reading time: 5 min
shops with brand flags over the entrances on bond street
shops with brand flags  over the entrances on bond street

Bond Street’s finest. Photo by Gary Knight

LUX selects the best fine – and high – jewellery pieces that are as big on style as they are on bling. Compiled by James Gurney

gold and black sunglasses

Eyes on you: An alfresco lunch meeting demands a soupçon of city cool, and bejewelled sunglasses edge up the glamour. From Cartier to Boucheron to Pomellato, luxury houses offer divine takes on summer shades. Designed around house motifs and with the artistry of the main collections, the crystal-embellished Divas’ Dream by Bulgari are a glittering example.

a rose gold friendship bracelet with a ladybird and flower on it

Good natured: It takes a jewellery maison with the cultural heft of Van Cleef & Arpels to credibly give way to whimsy, as the Lucky Spring collection demonstrates. Exquisitely crafted, designs include plum blossom, ladybird and lily of the valley rendered in precious metals and stones. This five-motif bracelet is in rose gold, white mother of pearl, carnelian and onyx.

A heart shaped rose gold ring

Lines of beauty: What constitutes modern romance? Paris-based Italian jewellery house Repossi has a fair idea. This year marks the tenth anniversary of its signature Antifer collection, whose Antifer Heart ring creates a contemporary-classic form. The occasion sees the new Antifer Heart necklace and two hoop earrings, all featuring that iconic sharp tip.

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A gold ring with a pearl in the centre

Linked In: Japanese jewellery house Tasaki celebrates the never-ending possibilities of gold, pearls and diamonds with new additions to its Fine Links collection. Across seven pieces by Thakoon Panichgul, Akoya pearls rest on yellow- gold and diamond link shapes. Two rings, two pendants, two pairs of earrings and an ear cuff offer plenty of modern styling options.

A rose gold wavy bracelet

Stem subject: Christian Dior’s passion for roses is reflected in additions to the Bois de Rose collection that includes bracelets, rings and this modern ear cuff, all by Victoire de Castellane. Symbolising attachment, the abstract stem design comes in white, pink and yellow gold, with or without diamonds, and wraps organically skin, solo or stacked.

gold cufflinks with the Louis Vuitton logo on a box with coloured logo symbols on a black surface

Ear candy: Earphones become jewellery at Louis Vuitton. Part of the Horizon Light Up collection, the wireless earphones come in a charging case featuring a Connected monogram that animates via LED backlighting. The silhouette of earphones and case are inspired by the Tambour watch case, and the earphones have a polished sapphire top disc. In five colours.

This article was first published in the Spring/Summer 2023 issue of LUX

Reading time: 5 min

The spacious garden and pool at the St Regis Mardavall, Mallorca

In the fifth installment of our luxury travel views columns, LUX’s Editor-in-Chief Darius Sanai checks in at the St Regis Mardavall in Mallorca

What drew us there?

A huge rolling lawn, two swimming pools, trees and flowerbeds, beyond which stretches more thick grass, the cliff edge and the sea. Face inland and beyond the pools there is a graceful low-rise building, and mountaintops beyond. It’s not what you expect of a hotel in Mallorca, which, by folklore has been split into crowded coastal regions and beautiful but isolated inland areas. Yet here we were, by the sea in the southwest, with as much space as you could imagine. The space between sun loungers could be measured in tens of metres, rather than centimetres, as in many Mediterranean resorts in midsummer. We could have popped a champagne cork from our sun loungers, watched it fly and descend, and still not meet guests on the nearest loungers. You can get that and more in a villa, but few villas have the facilities of a luxury hotel to hand, and, anyway, we rather like seeing elegant strangers at a distance, rather than just our own wonderful guests.

The indoor-outdoor terrace with its endless view

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How was the stay?

You can, of course, enjoy delightful isolation at the Mardavall. This was amplified in our rooms: we had a suite at garden level with its own private pool, separated from the rest of the grounds by a floral hedge. The private pool was situated in our own private garden, with outdoor dining table, sofa, chairs and loungers – and a similar setup inside in case of bad weather (very rare here). If one of the definitions of luxury is unexpected peace, then this was luxury. The Mardavall is also beautifully located. It’s a few steps from the beach, and fewer than 15 minutes drive from Palma, the island’s capital, which has transformed in recent years from a slightly down-at-heel port with a rich history to a rather beautifully preserved historic city: Barcelona without the tourists. We made the foray into Palma a couple of nights, but, in the main, one could be very happy just at the resort. Es Fum, its one Michelin-starred restaurant, is an extremely elegant place to enjoy a lingering dinner, and we also liked the beach vibe and food of the Pool Bar Sa Badia. It’s not a Mykonos beach club, and that’s precisely why to go.

The relaxing St Regis bar

Read more: Royal Riviera, Côte d’Azur Review

Anything else?

Med-hotel beach shops vary in quality, but the little boutique here is quite magnificent for its selection of hard-to-find boutique brands. Not what you’d expect and kudos to its manager. The Mardavall is the kind of place you miss all winter and look forward to returning to in the summer.

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This article was first published in the Spring/Summer 2023 issue of LUX

Reading time: 2 min